i have a question...

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Tales from the Job Search

I just spent some time looking for jobs. Mostly, I am procrastinating. But also, why not get a headstart on what's out there?

It's taking me back to the Season of Unemployment in 2005 when I spent hours and hours per day sending out resumes and cover letters to companies via email.

Eventually, I contacted Dialogue Direct, which is an on-the-street solicitation service for organizations like North Shore Animal League and Children International.

I kicked ass at the interview and blew the others at orientation out of the water.

I got hired in August.

I spent eight hours a day trying to get people to sign up to sponsor animals at North Shore. The amount of money I made was dependent on how many people I chatted up enough to get them to sign up. This twisted into my mind that I was personally a terrible person if I didn't get anyone to sign up. I went home crying every day.

It's the only job I've ever quit.

I spent most of that time in great debt to my mother and S. S and I had just moved across the country and were living in a small sublet in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn.

I'd spend my days sitting on the couch, directly under a skylight, in the dead of summer. I'd buy Chinese food downstairs for lunch and save half of it for dinner. I'd run between the TV and our back room, where our computers were set up. I sent my information to anyone who was hiring any kind of administrative assistant at all, wasting most of my time on craigslist. I visited temp agencies that told me that I didn't score high enough to get placed with them.

I bought a three-piece suit and went on twenty-three interviews. Yes. Twenty-three.

I finally discovered Idealist.org and eventually interviewed at Population Council, a sexual health non-profit organization on the campus of Rockefeller University--it was interview #22. Pop Council was the first place I had interviewed where all of my directing and managing experience as a theatre major counted for something, even though it wasn't paid.

A few days after the interview, I got an email that said I had not gotten the job. Then, I had a dream that the manager called me and told me that email was incorrect and that I had been hired.

I DID get hired--and told the manager about my email and my dream--as an office assistant and worked there for over two years. It wasn't the perfect job and I didn't get paid enough and I didn't use a lot of the skills I'd honed my whole life, but it was a paycheck.

These days, it's wildly satisfying to be looking for jobs with higher degree requirements. I'm still scouring Idealist.org for the perfect fit and just sent out a few resumes for Program Director positions in Boston.

I also decided to check out craiglist and found a post for a teaching position at a day care center in my neighborhood.

Then, out of curiosity, I Googled the center and the only hit I came across was about how the custodian was beaten to death in 2005.

So, um, maybe I won't follow up with them.


Kimberly said...

Good luck with the job search! My boyfriend is trying to find something as I type, and I just told him about Idealist.org.
I'm terrified to have to start searching. Good thing I don't have to start thinking about that within the next few years, I guess.

Annie said...

thanks, kimberly, and good luck to him!